Healthwatch Wiltshire is looking for people with a passion for health and care services to join its Local Leadership Board.
The Local Leadership Board will be the driving force behind Healthwatch Wiltshire's commitment to ensure the voices of children, young people and adults are heard by those who run, plan and regulate health and social care services in the county.
The Board will be made up of six voluntary members, including a Chair and Deputy Chair, and applications are open to anyone who wants to see services meet the needs of those who use them.
Stacey Plumb, Healthwatch Wiltshire Interim Manager, said: "We're looking for people who are willing to give their time and energy to Healthwatch and help us to prioritise the issues that are most important to the people of Wiltshire.
"You might be a regular service user, have a background in the NHS or social care services, or just have a keen interest in seeing services improved."
As a Board member, you'll be representing Healthwatch Wiltshire at key meetings so you'll need to be able to make sense of complex information and be a good strategic thinker.
You'll also need to be a strong team player, being both a good listener and be able to speak up on issues that you feel are important.
To apply, please send a CV and covering letter outlining why you are suitable for the role, to firstname.lastname@example.org by 12 noon on Friday 9 November.
More information about the role is available here.
If you have any questions about the role, contact Emma Leatherbarrow, Director of Partnerships at Help and Care - Healthwatch's Wiltshire's provider - at email@example.com
Healthwatch Wiltshire has earned national recognition for a project which gave hundreds of young people a chance to speak up about their mental health.
We picked up an award for Volunteering at the Healthwatch England conference in Stratford upon Avon on Wednesday 3 October, an event which brings together Healthwatch teams from across the UK.
In partnership with Youth Action Wiltshire, Community Organisers from Community First and local schools, Healthwatch mentored a group of students, supporting them to learn new skills and build confidence. Some of the students were trained to become Young Listeners, visiting schools and speaking to other students to understand their views on mental health.
Stacey Plumb, Interim Manager for Healthwatch Wiltshire, said: "We're over the moon to win this award. We really enjoyed working with the students and would like to thank Youth Action Wiltshire, Community First and all the schools involved for helping us bring this project to life.
“The Young Listeners showed great dedication throughout this project and really listened to what other young people told them. There were also great benefits for the Young Listeners themselves, they learnt a lot and have grown and developed in confidence.
"The government has committed to spending £1.4 billion in children and young people's mental health services over the next five years and, as more and more children are seeking support for their mental health, we wanted to know what young people want from these services."
Students taking part in the project told Young Listeners they wanted:
Another said: "I wanted to become a Young Listener so I could help young people if they have problems because I might have had some experiences that are close to theirs."
Cleo Evans, from Youth Action Wiltshire, said: “We are delighted and proud to learn that the YouthWatch Project for Healthwatch Wiltshire has been recognised nationally by Healthwatch England.
"Healthwatch Wiltshire commissioned Community First and Youth Action Wiltshire to deliver a local programme that enabled us to develop and deliver a bespoke youth volunteering project that placed young people at its heart. For young people in Wiltshire, they have been given the opportunity to help shape the future by allowing young people to take ownership of how they should be supported in schools around their mental health and wellbeing.
"We have loved working with the young people who are the true heroes of this project.”
The project was undertaken by Healthwatch Wiltshire under our previous provider, Evolving Communities.
Celebrated every year, the Healthwatch England awards highlight how local Healthwatch across the country have helped make people’s views of health and social care services heard.
Liz Sayce, award judge and Healthwatch England Committee Member, said: “Healthwatch Wiltshire have this year demonstrated the real power of peer support. They helped young people who had experienced mental health challenges to grow in confidence through volunteering, learn how to support themselves, and how to help others too.”
Read more about the Young Listeners project on our Reports page.
We would like to hear your views on mental health services in Wiltshire. Tell us about your experiences in our survey.